DPP Home Profiles Angela Marklew: Ahead Of The Curve

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Angela Marklew: Ahead Of The Curve

Angela Marklew is a young, L.A.-based professional whose photography is playful, ironic and full of unexpected elements

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When her internship ended, she hit the road, seeking out abandoned buildings, landscapes and ghost towns where she could continue working with the type of imagery that she had been doing before she met Halper. For three months, she drove around North America seeking subject matter. At a stop at a friend's studio back in Canada, she came up with a concept she just couldn't get rid of.

Recalls Marklew, "I got an idea in my head for this image—there's a girl, surrounded by white, everything is pristine, and she's got chocolate cake on her face. That image was the beginning of the food series."

It was the beginning of the f word, and the beginning of Marklew's foray into portraiture and fashion. Though she had been nervous photographing people in the past, and admits that she's painfully shy, she felt at home with the concept, the process and the final image. "I really like food, and I'm really curious about people's relationships to food," she admits, and photographing that image allowed her to realize that she liked working with people. Within the next year, she became exclusively portraiture-based. Her first big assignment was for the short-lived Signature LA magazine; Marklew was hired to shoot 40 editorial portraits over the course of several months for the magazine's premiere issue. It was a turning point for her to land such a big job.

In the past two years, Marklew has been published in nearly a dozen different magazines, and has been consistently shooting editorials, fashion stories and creative work. Though her work isn't always as subtly satirical as the f word, she has created a body of work that's varied and elegant. She has a wonderful way of capturing the essence of the assignment and finding a visual solution to the styling, clothing or personalities that she's representing.

Marklew shoots a variety of different types of editorial and fashion stories, sometimes for a client and sometimes for herself. "I love shooting avant-garde and couture clothes and just things that are very structural," she says. "I love how you can tell a fashion story and it's not like a narrative thing, it's just kind of like a feeling—like you're shooting a feeling."

The feelings often relate to her own emotional spectrum when she's shooting the stories. The women that she portrays are strong, confident and fully self-possessed even if there's also a sort of longing in their eyes or a more introspective gaze. The more of her images you look at, the more you can see the similarities between how Marklew is interacting with her subjects—with the framing, the posing and the structure, despite the obvious visual differences that Marklew employs to tell the appropriate story for the subject.

"Once I get an idea for an editorial, I basically see the finished product in my mind," she reveals. "I then work backwards to figure out what I need to do to get there, meaning, what kind of post work will need to be done, what kind of lighting will I need to achieve what I envision, what kind of mood will the model need to portray?" The resulting images are always consistent, thematic and masterful, with a specific appeal that can be attributed to Marklew's approach.

Marklew is gaining ground as a new photographer on the Los Angeles scene, and garnering more work and more exposure. Although she currently gets the bulk of her jobs through word of mouth and cold submissions rather than traditional marketing, she's planning to start a more robust marketing campaign to build her business in 2011. However, her most important confidence booster was the time spent assisting Halper. During his workshops, Marklew was able to watch how he interacted with the students, but she was also exposed to other photographic philosophies and styles.


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